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The Tang Dynasty – 618 AD – 907 AD Origins – Following the collapse of the Han, a series of civil wars, barbarian conflicts and short, minor dynasties,

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Presentation on theme: "The Tang Dynasty – 618 AD – 907 AD Origins – Following the collapse of the Han, a series of civil wars, barbarian conflicts and short, minor dynasties,"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Tang Dynasty – 618 AD – 907 AD Origins – Following the collapse of the Han, a series of civil wars, barbarian conflicts and short, minor dynasties, dominate Chinese history. -The first true period of stability begins in 587AD when China was unified again under the Sui dynasty. This dynasty would be overthrown by its greatest general in the year 617 AD following the rule of a final bad emperor of the Sui. - This is the establishment of the Tang (TONG) dynasty ~ Government and Society -Emperor Taizong (TIE TSOONG) [Tai Cong] - Conquered and expanded Chinas borders. But more than just a warrior, Tai Cong also expanded Wudis old civil service exams. Under the Tang, the test grew into three separate series of exams (as we discussed). Because a position of leadership was earned by your merit on these exams, Chinas government might have been called a meritocracy (a system where people are chosen and promoted based on talent and performance.) - Land was given to peasants who made the most of it by improving farming methods. The additional food led to another population growth. Trade and the Silk Road: -Silk Road trade increased dramatically. -Buddhism (especially), Islam and Christianity spread into China from India along the Silk Road. -Chang an, capital of the Tang, became the largest city in the world. Important People of the Tang: -Empress Wu Zhao – The true power behind the Imperial throne for nearly 40 years. First woman to ever wield so much power in China. - Du Fu – Widely regarded as Chinas greatest poet

2 Tang Advancements: -Buddhist monks invent block printing (700s AD) -Gunpowder is invented (800s AD) -Smallpox vaccine (900s AD) -Expands Civil Service Exams -Cosmopolitan (city-based) culture -Great art (Wu Daozi), Great Poetry (Li Bo, Du Fu) Tang Social Structure: Gentry Peasants Merchants Decline of the Tang: -A crushing rebellion led by a Turkish general under Tang service succeeds in breaking the power of the Tang dynasty. -Another later rebellion, led by Huang Chao, devastated Northern China, particularly the Tang capital of Changan. -As barbarians claim northern China, the Chinese flee south and reestablish a new dynasty, the Song. Scholars Aristocrats

3 The Song Dynasty – AD Origins – As northern China is overrun by barbarian tribes, a Chinese general by the name of Zhao Kuangyin seizes the throne and establishes the Song dynasty. -When the Songs northern capital was captured by barbarians, they settled in south China Important Shifts in Society – -The old aristocratic families do not survive the fall of the Tang. Power shifts to families who earn wealth and prestige through government jobs earned by scholarly merit. - In reality, regional and local differences could have a large impact on the wealth and status of families. In many cases, wealth did not guarantee status and status did not guarantee wealth. -The Exam System - See Reading -In the Song, those who passed the civil service exam became mandarins, a sort of social class of government officials. -~ Cultural Contributions -Neoconfucianism: A strict reaction to the growing influence of Buddhism in Chinese society, Neoconfucianism was meant to weaken Buddhist influences by incorporating some of the Buddhist and Daoist ideas into Confucianism. -Dramatic Economic change – Reformer Wang Anshi -Created many important changes to the Song economic and governmental system.

4 Wealth and Art of the Song: The Song is best known for its growth of wealth and its art. Modern Chinese cuisine developed during the Song. Song porcelain and landscape paintings are some of the finest art in world history. Also perfected the compass and began using gunpowder for military use. Fall of the Song: When the Mongols of Genghis Khan show up, you lose. Its that simple. The Mongols completely capture northern China by 1234 AD and then southern China follows in 1279AD.


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